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Co-sleeping. We’ve all heard the term, and probably know what it means. But maybe you are wondering if you should co-sleep or not, and how to do it safely. Co-sleeping becoming more common amongst families. Making the decision to co-sleep with your little one is a personal preference choice for your family.
10 tips for co-sleeping
- Breastfeeding. If you are breastfeeding your little one, co-sleeping will be infinitely easier and more intuitive since a breastfeeding mama and her babe are already on the same wave length. Now, that’s not to say that a bottle-fed baby can’t co-sleep. Of course, you can co-sleep with a bottle-fed babe. It just means that you are still going to have to get up out of bed when they get hungry at night.
- Remove the bed frame. While you may not want to remove your bed frame, something to take into consideration is the possibility of baby rolling off the bed. No matter how careful you are, this is one of the risks of co-sleeping. By removing the bed frame, you remove the possibly of your little one hitting the bed frame if they roll off the bed. This may not be necessary if your bed frame is not very large or if it a fabric one.
- Baby sleep on back. Just like a crib, it is safest for baby to be sleeping on their back and not on their stomach.
- Bed next to the wall. To reduce the risk of baby rolling off the bed, you can puck your bed up against the wall completely. Make sure that there is no space between the bed and wall so that your little one doesn’t roll in to that space and get stuck. You can also use a small sleeper for baby like this one here
- Baby between mom and wall. If you choose to push the bed against the wall, the safest place for baby is between mom and the wall. I don’t say this to put down dad’s in any way. However, mom is usually the one that is more aware, even while sleeping, of what is going on with baby. Plus, if baby is breastfeeding, being close to mom makes that so much easier on both.
- No extra pillows or bedding. Just like in the crib, it is not safe to have extra pillows or blankets in your bed when baby is sleeping with you.
- Eliminate the risk of being strangled. Now, your bed may not be next to a window for the cords from the blinds to be next to your bed, but maybe you have a phone charger, lamp cord, etc. that is close. You want to make sure that there aren’t any strings or cords anywhere near where your little babe will be sleeping so that they do not get strangled. This also goes for long hair. If you have long hair, you want to be sure to put it back in a bun so that your baby doesn’t get tangled in your hair.
- No drugs or alcohol. You want to make sure that you do not have any medications, sleeping aids, other drugs, or alcohol in your system when your baby is sleeping in your bed. All of these things make you less aware of what is going on and increase the risk of you rolling on top of baby or not waking up when they do.
- Not too hot. There is no need to bundle up baby when they are sleeping in your bed. Not only will they have your blankets, but also your body heat. Overheating is just as big of a risk as being too cold is.
- Firm mattress. Using a firm mattress is best when co-sleeping. A soft mattress or waterbed can increase the chances of SIDS.
By practicing these tips when co-sleeping, you will be able to have more peace of mind knowing that you are doing everything to make it a safe environment for both you and baby.
Looking for support and friendship with other moms? Check out my Facebook Group, Parenting With Purpose.